Welcome to AAPI Communities in Conversation! If you missed any of the live streams, you can check them out here.

AAPI Communities in Conversation is a collaborative online speaker series celebrates AAPI books, voices, cultures, and experiences. The series is a joint effort between the University of South Carolina's Augusta Baker Endowed Chair and Penguin Random House Library Marketing, with additional media support from Publishers Weekly.

Each month, the AAPI Communities in Conversation series will highlight notable books by AAPI authors and creators, as well as increase the appreciation and understanding of the Asian and Pacific diasporic cultures, stories, and experiences.

The series highlights books written for adults, teens, and children across all genres from literary fiction, cookbooks, and graphic novels to mysteries and memoirs, according to Miriam Tuliao, senior library marketing manager at Penguin Random House, adding that the series is designed to help librarians and readers connect with a range of AAPI voices.

The Penguin Random House Library Marketing team is coordinating the series in conjunction with with Nicole A. Cooke, the Augusta Baker Endowed Chair and associate professor at the University of South Carolina's School of Library and Information Science (and a PW contributor). Program moderators are public and academic librarians of Asian/Pacific descent and include adult and youth specialists, ALA emerging leaders, and active members of the Chinese American Librarians Association and Asian Pacific American Librarians Association.

ThMalaka Gharib, author of I WAS THEIR AMERICAN DREAM w/Michelle Lee, NYPL e series will feature a live talk every month in 2022, and the talks will also be promoted and available for later viewing via PW’s weekly Preview for Librarians newsletter. The full 2022 schedule is now out, and you can check it out (and register for future talks) here!

Past Episodes

AAPI Communities in Conversation #7: Marie Myung-Ok Lee in conversation with LAPL's Lynn Nguyen

In the seventh discussion in the series, Marie Myung-Ok Lee talks with Lynn Nguyen from the Los Angeles Public Library about her book Finding My Voice, which follows a young Korean-American through her senior year at a Minnesota high school.

AAPI Communities in Conversation #6: Malaka Gharib in conversation with Michelle Lee

In the sixth discussion in the series, Malaka Gharib talks with NYPL's Michelle Lee about her book I Was Their American Dream which PW called a "charming graphic memoir" that "riffs on the joys and challenges of developing a unique ethnic identity."

AAPI Communities in Conversation #5: Jai Chakrabarti, in conversation with Jenay Solomon

In the fifth discussion in the series, Jai Chakrabarti, author of A Play for the End of the World, talks with librarian Jenay Solomon, from the University of Iowa Libraries about his book, A Play for the End of the World, which PW called an "arresting debut" that will move readers.

AAPI Communities in Conversation #4: Sheldon Simeon, in conversation with Michelle Young

In the fourth discussion in the series, two-time Top Chef competitor Sheldon Simeon, author of Cook Real Hawai’i, celebrates Hawaiian cuisine and customs with Michelle Young of the Waimea Public Library.

AAPI Communities in Conversation #3: Sara Desai & Jen Frederick

In the third discussion in the series, which streamed live on March 1, Sara Desai, author of The Singles Table & Jen Frederick, author of Seoulmates spoke with Las Vegas-Clark County Librarian Seungyeon (Sue) Yang-Peaceatch.

AAPI Communities in Conversation #2: Gina Apostol

In the second discussion in the series, which streamed live on February 1, Jaena Rae Cabrera of the San Francisco Public Library talks with Gina Apostol, author of the acclaimed debut novel Bibliolepsy. Watch here!

AAPI Communities in Conversation #1: Sujata Massey and Naomi Hirahara

In the inaugural discussion, which streamed live on January 4, 2022, Adrienne Cruz of the Azusa City (California) Library spoke with Naomi Hirahara, author of Clark & Division, and Sujata Massey, author of The Bombay Prince. Watch here!